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Today’s lesson: Always listen to Scott Kennedy when it comes to numbers

Monday, Mar 4, 2019

* Everyone saw headlines like these last week…

* Tuesday, February 26, 5:25 pm: Chicago On Pace For Record Low Turnout In Mayoral Election: Barring a late surge in voting, that puts Chicago on pace for a turnout of about 30 percent to 32 percent, the worst municipal election turnout since 2007, when the city set a record low of 33 percent turnout.

* Tuesday, February 26, 11:44pm: Chicago appears to set voting record for low turnout

* Wednesday, February 27, 11:05 am: Low voter turnout attributed to disillusionment with leaders, drop in interest from midterms: That anemic total ranks among the lowest turnout levels recorded in a city election since it was 33 percent in 2007, when Richard M. Daley won his sixth and final term.

* Wednesday, February 27, 6:22 pm: Too Many Candidates, Poor Youth Turnout Blamed for Low Vote Totals in Chicago

* Scott Kennedy, however, was urging caution…


* And he was right…



* And those mail-in ballots are having an impact

As more mail-in ballots from Tuesday’s election are counted, Ald. Roderick Sawyer (6th) has seen his already tenuous lead shrink even more.

Records from the Chicago Board of Elections show that, as of Friday, Sawyer — son of former Mayor Eugene Sawyer and head of the council’s Black Caucus — was holding onto 50.02 percent of the vote in the 6th Ward aldermanic race.

The combined tally of his two opponents — Richard Wooten and Deborah Foster-Bonner — was just four votes fewer than Sawyer’s 5,020 votes. Foster-Bonner was in second place, with more than 31 percent of the vote.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

11 Comments
  1. - Rich Miller - Monday, Mar 4, 19 @ 10:04 am:

    Also, notice that the headline is strictly qualified. There are a few things one should never listen to Kennedy about. Malört would be one of them.


  2. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Mar 4, 19 @ 10:10 am:

    Early voting and voting by mail has significantly changed how voter turnout should be measured, gauged, and “figured” when it especially comes down to Election Day.

    It’s like chasing pluses… “did they vote early, by mail, did they vote early today… “

    Election Day actually begins when mail ballots can be mailed, when early voting begins, on the day the election has polls opened in the precincts… that’s the new “Election Day”, turnout is the gumbo of all three, and you can’t eat gumbo until all the ingredients are cooked.

    Also, that tweeter…if you’re not checking it out, you’re losing out.


  3. - PJ - Monday, Mar 4, 19 @ 10:13 am:

    There was never a good qualitative reason to expect substantially low turnout


  4. - wordslinger - Monday, Mar 4, 19 @ 10:32 am:

    Media outlets really need to figure out that it’s a new ballgame with mail-in ballots.


  5. - The Captain - Monday, Mar 4, 19 @ 11:00 am:

    If the press drank more Malort they probably would have seen this coming.


  6. - Roman - Monday, Mar 4, 19 @ 11:02 am:

    Part of the problem is the media are desperate for some actual political news to cover on Election Day before the polls close and vote counting starts. So they try to find a story angle in turnout numbers, even if there isn’t one. David Orr stopped doing mid-day turnout projections a couple of years ago. I wish the Chicago Board of Elections would do the same.

    And Kennedy kicks butt. If you’re not following him you should be kicked out of Illinois politics.


  7. - Hon. John Fritchey - Monday, Mar 4, 19 @ 11:35 am:

    Ultimately, he will go down in history memorialized by the Scott Kennedy water park that will someday soon be established within the Thompson Center once it is turned into Windy City Adventure World.


  8. - Soccermom - Monday, Mar 4, 19 @ 11:58 am:

    Fritchey, I am willing to put my considerable support behind this project, but only if it is called “Blue Wave.”


  9. - Grand Avenue - Monday, Mar 4, 19 @ 1:39 pm:

    I didn’t mind the intra-day kvetching though, it may have gotten more people to go and vote after work when there was a bit of a turnout surge. So while inaccurate at the end of the day, it may have done some good.


  10. - JT11505 - Monday, Mar 4, 19 @ 3:40 pm:

    So, if you’re Sawyer, do you spend money on advertising? Or just wait until the 12th? Kind of a weird position to be in.


  11. - SpfdNewb - Monday, Mar 4, 19 @ 3:48 pm:

    Malort isn’t terrible, if you like cough syrup spiked with gasoline.


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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